Friday, August 17, 2001, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


4 students identified for scholarships
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Four students from this region have been identified by the Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIO) here for science scholarships under a scheme launched by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

With a view to motivating bright SC/ST students to take up science subjects at plus two level and exposing them to the excitement of research in important areas of science and technology, students who have scored the highest marks in aggregate of science subjects in Class-X examination are awarded a cash prize of Rs 3,000. They are also given a certificate and invited to stay at a CSIR laboratory for 10-15 days.

Those who have been selected include Mukesh Kumar (Faridabad), Geeta Rani (Jhajhar), Narinderjeet (Ludhiana) and Devinder Kaur (Banga). Their names were announced at a function organised to mark Independence Day.


Probe against PAP Commandant stayed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Issuing notice of motion to the state of Punjab and other respondents on a petition filed by IPS officer Mann Singh, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today stayed inquiry proceedings, if any, against him. The inquiry, as per the petitioner’s claim, was the outcome of Punjab Principal Secretary Bikramjit Singh’s enmity.

Seeking directions for quashing the decision of ordering a vigilance inquiry against him on the basis of a complaint filed by his brother-in-law, the petitioner, posted as Commandant of Punjab Armed Police’s 13 Battalion, had earlier alleged that the Principal Secretary “wanted to take revenge”.

Giving details, Mr Mann Singh had stated that he had conducted an inquiry into the allegations of disproportionate assets against Bikramjit Singh while he was posted as Superintendent (Vigilance). The Principal Secretary had turned hostile after the petitioner refused to exclude certain property in the name of Bikramjit Singh’s mother, his counsel had contended.

He had further argued that the complaint had been filed against the petitioner due to a family dispute Certain complaints had been proved wrong after inquiry by the Vigilance Department.

After going through the petition, the Bench, comprising Mr Justice Amar Bir Singh Gill and Mr Justice Swatanter Kumar, issued notice of motion for September 29 before staying further proceedings.

Civic body chief’s election set aside

Allowing a petition, Mr Justice J.S. Narang of the High Court today set aside the election of Ms Sukhdarshan Kaur as the president of Nagar Council of Barnala.

Pronouncing orders, Mr Justice Narang also directed that the petitioner, Ms Rajinder Pal Kaur, will remain the Nagar Council President “till removed in accordance with the law”. The Judge also quashed a notification passed by the council, along with another notification published by the government.

Ms Rajinder Pal Kaur, was elected as Municipal Councillor of Barnala in 1998 before being elected as president. She was later removed from the post “in exercise of powers vested under Section 22 of the Punjab Municipal Act”.

Order to acquire land for jail

In an affidavit submitted before a bench headed by Mr Justice Jawahar Lal Gupta, Haryana’s Additional Inspector-General of Prisons stated that a notification under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act had been issued by the government for acquiring 402.12 kanals (50 acres approximately) at Fideri village in Rewari district for the construction of a district jail.

He added that 107.12 kanals — for lodging 200 prisoners — was available with the department at Nasibpur village for the construction of a sub-jail at Narnaul.

Taking suo motu notice of the condition of the jail during an inspection tour, Mr Justice V.K. Jhanji of the High Court had earlier observed that the building as per his information was over 100 years old and a new one was needed as repairs were not possible.

Octroi recovery stayed

Taking up a petition filed by Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited for restraining the Amritsar Municipal Council from recovering or charging octroi on goods brought within the municipal limits of the city, Mr Justice S.S. Nijjar and Mr Justice Ashutosh Mohunta of the High Court stayed the recovery of octroi. Counsel for the petitioners had earlier contended that the state cannot levy service charge on property belonging to the Union Government.

Notice in Dangi case

On a petition filed by former minister Anand Singh Dangi, seeking the grant of bail in a cheating and a criminal breach of trust case, Mr Justice M.L. Singhal of the High Court today issued notice of motion to Haryana Advocate-General for September 6. Dangi is currently lodged in the Central Jail at Ambala.

He was earlier booked by the state Vigilance Bureau under Sections 218, 406, 420, 467, 468, 471 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code on July 6 last year. According to the prosecution, Dangi, misusing his official position, had, in connivance with officials of the Rehabilitation Department, caused loss of lakhs of rupees by “getting wrong allotment of land” in favour of his nominees.

Seeking grant of bail, counsel for the petitioner had contended on his behalf that Dangi was innocent and was being implicated in false cases due to political vendetta.

Arrest stayed

Mr Justice V.M. Jain of the High Court on Thursday stayed the arrest of Ranbir Mann, a son of Haryana’s former minister Tejinder Singh Mann. The Judge also issued notice for September 20.

According to the prosecution, Ranbir Mann, Managing Director of a paper mill, had evaded sales tax. Seeking grant of bail, counsel for the petitioner had contended that Mann was being implicated in a false case.



HC directive on Bhabat village
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Disposing of a petition, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today directed the state of Punjab and other respondents to issue necessary notification for the inclusion of Bhabat village in Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat.

Pronouncing the orders in the open court on a petition filed by the Gram Panchayat of Bhabat village, the Bench, comprising Mr Justice S.S. Nijjar and Mr Justice Ashutosh Mohunta, further directed the respondents to issue the notification within two months of receiving the order’s copy.

In their detailed order, the Judges observed: “In a paragraph of an affidavit filed by the state of Punjab in the court today, it is stated that the matter (pertaining to Bhabat village) is under active consideration and the notification to this effect was likely to be shortly issued by the Revenue Department”.

The Judges added: “The petition is disposed of with a direction to the respondents to issue necessary notification in this regard as well as notification under Section 5 (2) of the Punjab Municipal Act for the inclusion of Bhabat village in Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat”.



Play depicts agony of women
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
The truth of life is always hard to accept. But that does not contain conscience-keepers of society from citing it. Atamjit’s production, which has the power to set minds on fire, will go into evidence at Tagore Theatre soon. The playwright-director has valid points to raise in the play that takes one back in time. The script, laced with bold stuff attributed to feminists, flows back from menopause and rests at the most poignant stage in woman’s life — the menarche, which, since time immemorial, has been condoned and underplayed in social context.

The layers of this very reason behind the stereotype social attitude towards the agony of woman are peeled off in the play titled main taan ik sarangi haan. The issue been analysed may be old, but the treatment is fresh and heartening, in the sense that the director does not choose to sit in judgement of men for the way they react to women’s pain. He instead arms his characters with the tool of liberation and allows them to do their own thing.

The characters have their own attitudes to keep and each one of them appears justified in guarding her role in relation to social norms. As one watches the play progress through lives of three main characters — Meena Tandon (played by Anita), Geeta (played by Raman) and Pal (played by Jaspal Dhillon), something keeps rankling in the mind. In this very rankling sound, the objective of the director seems to have been achieved.

The concept behind the play, as the director puts it, “flows from four folk tales of Punjab.” The irony inherent in each folktale has been recreated on stage for viewers to react and question. One tale revolves around a woman whose husband asks her to sleep with his friend on the wedding night itself. “And this to keep his “meaningless” word,” adds the director. The most dominant folktale, however, is that of another girl, who pays the price of menarche with her blood. She later grows in stature to become a sarangi, which, according to the director, is the best metaphor for a woman. “It’s a sounding board from where she can fight against those who sell her right to dignity for their rotten motives,” said Atamjit.

The play has a single male character. There are other men but their role is limited. The script is loud and harsh at times, but the dialogues fit well into the plot, which explores pain in and out. The three women in the play are best friends. Meena is liberated beyond imagination and has no qualms about accepting his sexual overtures. Geeta is morally inclined and finds it difficult to adjust to Meena’s behaviour. Pal takes the middle path.

The story revolves around these women, who have dared to shun male dominance and stay alone. The director has, however, not overlooked the other parts of this chosen package — loneliness, pain and yearnings. As the women sit and share their experiences, the script gets back to the days when they were blessed with youthful energies. In the garb of these energies comes the mention of menarche, a stage which makes a woman of a girl.

The trauma and tribulation of each character then unfolds to raise a sea of emotion. The vital question waiting to be answered is: “When will the man treat a woman as a human?” And if he ever will, the distinction of gender will vanish into thin air. What will remain will be the final truth — this time perhaps not a bitter one.

The play has music composed by Kamal Tewari; music director is Atul Sharma. Set and lights are being done by Ashok Sagar Bhagat, an Associate Professor at the National School of Drama and costumes are being done by Dolly Tewari.

The play will be staged on August 18, 19 and 20 at 6.45 pm.

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